Wednesday, Mar 27, 2002
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By Our Special Correspondent
HYDERABAD, MARCH 26. The Vicar-General of Khammam diocese, Melchior D. Raju, has been elected the regional superior (India) for PIME (Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions), a Rome-based religious body. The election took place two days ago at Eluru, PIME's headquarters in India.
PIME has at present about 600 priests and seminarians who work all over the world including Andhra Pradesh in India, the U.S., Mexico, Japan, Bangladesh, Thailand, Cambodia, Philippines, Hong Kong, Papua New Guinea, Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Guinea Bissau, Brazil and Italy.
Fr. Melchior Raju is the first Telugu priest to be elected to the coveted post in the PIME's 147-year history. He succeeds Augustine Palett who hails from Kerala. Fr. Melchior Raju has his family roots in Gunadala, Vijayawada where his father was a teacher. His simple background is expected to give a new direction to the PIME which, as a policy, focuses on social work through orphanages, homes for the destitute and the aged and leprosy health centres, rather than on religious preaching.
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